Donald Kohan to be Given Narins Award for Contributions in Education

Donald E. Kohan

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Donald E. Kohan, MD, PhD, FASN, who has been a leader in the educational efforts of ASN, will receive the Robert G. Narins Award for these and other contributions. Dr. Kohan is professor of medicine at the University of Utah Health Sciences Center in Salt Lake City.

He has served the University of Utah as chief of nephrology, nephrology fellowship training program director, and dean of graduate medical education. He has also been the chief of medicine at the Salt Lake City VA Medical Center.

The Narins Award honors those who have made substantial contributions to education and teaching, and that has been the focus of Dr. Kohan’s activities with ASN. He was the first ASN education director for nephrology fellowship training. He chaired the executive committee of the ASN training program directors (TPDs) from 2006 to 2011. He helped establish the subspecialty and ASN in-training examinations. He contributed to developing new Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education guidelines for nephrology, initiating development of nephrology fellowship curricula including geriatric nephrology, creating travel awards and programs for medical students at Kidney Week, developing learning experiences for residents at Kidney Week, creating Kidney Week pathways for educators including education-based abstracts and symposia, promoting awareness of nephrology workforce shortages, creating ASN nephrology TPD retreats, creating a course for new TPDs, redefining the structure of the TPD executive committee, and developing ASN webpages that contain extensive information for TPDs and nephrology fellows.

Dr. Kohan obtained a PhD in renal physiology in 1980 and an MD in 1982. For the past 25 years, his laboratory has examined the role of distal nephron autocoids, including endothelin, nitric oxide, prostaglandins, and other factors, in the control of urinary salt and water excretion and arterial pressure in health and in hypertension. His team pioneered renal cell-specific gene targeting.

Dr. Kohan has served on National Institutes of Health, VA, and American Heart Association study sections, including chairing the VA Nephrology Merit Review Committee. The importance of Dr. Kohan’s research has been recognized by virtue of his election to the American Society of Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians.

Robert G. Narins

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Robert G. Narins, MD, was the first recipient of the award now bearing his name. He taught and mentored countless students, serving on the faculties of the University of Pennsylvania, UCLA, Harvard University, Temple University, and Henry Ford Hospital. Well recognized for his contributions in the fields of fluid-electrolyte and acid-base physiology, Dr. Narins has also led numerous education efforts at the national and international levels. Among these, he has chaired the American Board of Internal Medicine’s Nephrology Board and worked on the American College of Physicians’ Annual Program Committee. From 1994 to 2006, he developed and guided ASN’s educational programs, including working to expand educational programs during Renal Week (Kidney Week). In addition, he was instrumental in the development of the Nephrology Self-Assessment Program (NephSAP and the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology; and in establishing the Fellow of the American Society of Nephrology program. Dr. Narins is also credited with working with organizations in Europe and Asia to help promote education and teaching in nephrology.


October-November 2012 (Vol. 4, Number 10 & 11)